In the news...

March 10, 2014

Headlines – March 10, 2014

News:

DOD budget: Expect big changes in five-year spending priorities -

Just before Maj. Gen. Jim Martin, the U.S. Air Force budget director, walked into the Pentagon briefing room on March 4, an aide slipped him a note. 

Boeing reports wing cracks on 787 Dreamliners in production -

Boeing said March 7 that “hairline cracks” had been discovered in the wings of about 40 787 Dreamliners that are in production, marking another setback for the company’s newest jet.

 

Business:

Finmeccanica Seeks More Centralized Control -

In a bid to scramble back into profit, Italy’s Finmeccanica group wants to emulate its European neighbor Airbus and hand more power to its headquarters, cutting back the autonomy of its units. 

Newport News Shipbuilding: Carrier funding prompts head scratching -

This week’s rollout of the Defense Department budget prompted as many questions as answers about the U.S. aircraft carrier fleet and the status of future big-ticket jobs at Newport News Shipbuilding. 

Airbus CEO blames industry for ‘disappointing’ Eurofighter sales -

International sales volume for the Eurofighter Typhoon combat aircraft has not met with expectations despite a window of opportunity provided by developmental delays of the Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter, Airbus Group CEO Tom Enders told reporters in Washington March 7. 

Airbus aims to expand slice of smaller U.S. defense ‘pie’ -

Top Airbus executives on Friday said they still hoped to expand the company’s share of the shrinking U.S. defense market but did not see a large U.S. acquisition target in the near-term. 

Armed with new name, Airbus Group courts U.S. defense market -

Officials from Airbus Group — the European aerospace and defense corporation formerly known as EADS — are hoping a new name will help open up sales opportunities with the U.S. military. 

Taiwan faces tough choices after U.S. cancels F-16 upgrade -

The U.S. Air Force’s decision not to fund the Combat Avionics Programmed Extension Suite program that would have upgraded 300 U.S. F-16 fighter jets and 146 Taiwan F-16s comes as a blow to Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman.

 

Defense:

Air Force left with little budget flexibility -

Air Force leadership spent months telling anyone who would listen that their budget would result in a smaller service today in order to afford modernization for tomorrow, and its budget delivered on that promise. But in an attempt to cut as deeply as possible to fund key priorities, the service has left itself in a precarious position as it heads into Congress to defend its decisions. 

Transit center ferries troops to, from Afghanistan -

Almost a year of complex coordination came down to a frenetic final month at Mihail Kogalniceanu Air Base, Romania, where hundreds of soldiers and airmen worked to complete a transit hub by Feb. 1 to carry the U.S. through the waning days of the Afghan war. 

Proposed spy plane cuts have area around Beale Air Force base worried -

When the Defense Department last month announced plans to retire the Beale-based fleet of U-2 spy planes starting in 2016 in favor of drones to save money, people began to worry. As many as 1,070 people attached to the Marysville-area base and its U-2 mission – maintainers, pilots, contractors and medical personnel – could be affected if the spy plane is mothballed, according to federal and state officials. 

Hill AFB to repair, maintain robots -

Under a developing contract at Hill Air Force Base, the mechanical beings will be creating work for humans instead of taking it away.

 

Veterans:

Remains of Tacoma airman killed in 1969 will finally return -

More than 44 years after his plane was lost in combat during the Vietnam War, U.S. Air Force Capt. Douglas David Ferguson is coming home. 

Post-9/11 vet unemployment rate jumps to 9.2 percent -

The unemployment rate for post-9/11 veterans jumped in February, nearly erasing the gains of a few months ago, Bureau of Labor Statistics data show. 

More vets suffer from ALS, but the VA moves effectively to help -

Thomas Corbett may never know what – if anything – from his five years as a heavy-equipment mechanic in the Marine Corps brought on the disease that likely will steal from him the use of nearly every one of his muscles and, sometime in the next several years, his very breath.

Researchers link Iraq dust with some vets’ lung problems -

Researchers at Stony Brook University in New York have coined the term “Iraq-Afghanistan war lung injury” to describe respiratory symptoms developed by some veterans — and they have duplicated the problem in mice, using dust from Camp Victory in Baghdad.

 

International:

Germany receives final ASGARD-upgraded Tiger helos -

The German Army has received the last of 12 Airbus Tiger attack helicopters that have been upgraded to Afghanistan Stabilization German Army Rapid Deployment (ASGARD) standard, Airbus Group announced March 6.

 

Viewpoint:

A defense budget based on hope -

If, as the Obama administration is convinced, the United States will no longer conduct “long and large stability operations” in foreign countries, then the defense budget it has proposed for next year makes some logical choices. Troop strength, particularly in the Army, is being cut — to the lowest level since before World War II — so that money can be spent on new technology, cyber operations and special operations forces, which will be expanded.




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Headlines July 28, 2014

News: U.S. has lost track of weapons given to Afghanistan - The United States supplied almost three quarter of a million weapons to Afghanistan’s army and police since 2004, but the military cannot track where many of those arms have gone, a new report found. Bill to improve VA has $17 billion price tag - A bipartisan...
 
 

News Briefs July 28, 2014

Marines seek authorization for dolphin deaths The Marine Corps is asking for a five-year authorization from the National Marine Fisheries Service for incidental deaths of bottlenose dolphins during training exercises at a bombing and target range. The Sun Journal of New Bern, N.C., reports that Connie Barclay of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration says...
 
 
Army photograph by David Vergun

Senior leaders explain Army’s drawdown plan

Army photograph by David Vergun No commander is happy when notified that a soldier from his or her command has been identified for early separation. But commanders personally notify those Soldiers and ensure participation in th...
 

 

Northrop Grumman awarded mission support services contract

The U.S. Army awarded Northrop Grumman a cost-plus-fixed-fee contract, with a potential value of $205 million, to continue providing mission logistics services in support of combat brigades training at the National Training Center in Fort Irwin, Calif. The contract covers one base year and two one-year options. Support will include the full range of mission...
 
 
Lockheed Martin photograph by Beth Groom

F-35 Rollout Marks U.S.-Australia Partnership Milestone

Lockheed Martin photograph by Beth Groom Royal Australian Air Force Air Marshal Geoff Brown delivers his remarks at the roll out ceremony for Australia’s first F-35. The official rollout of the first two F-35 Lightning II...
 
 
NASA/JPL-Caltech image

NASA’s Mars spacecraft maneuvers to prepare for close comet flyby

NASA/JPL-Caltech image This graphic depicts the orbit of comet C/2013 A1 Siding Spring as it swings around the sun in 2014. On Oct. 19, the comet will have a very close pass at Mars. Its nucleus will miss Mars by about 82,000 m...
 




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